Second passenger in light plane crash dies

By City News Service

One of three young siblings hospitalized in critical condition following a light-plane crash in Tierrasanta in which his mother was killed upon impact, also has died, according to the local coroner’s office.

Austin Crane, 8, died Wednesday at Rady Children’s Hospital, the San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office reported. His sisters and father, who also was critically injured in the crash, remain hospitalized, according to broadcast reports.

The Crane family’s home-built, single-engine Velocity Super XLRG5 went down near the 11th hole of Admiral Baker Golf Course - a military golf course just east of Interstate 15 - shortly before 1 p.m. Monday, according to police and the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

Pilot Gregory Crane, the children’s father, had flown to San Diego to pick up his wife, Lori, daughters 11-year-old Summer and 10-year-old Tia and Austin. Lori’s father, Earl Orner, said that his daughter and grandchildren had been visiting family here from Arizona, where they lived.

Lori was in the front passenger seat of the aircraft, which overturned after impacting the ground.

Soon after taking off from Montgomery Field about 12:45 p.m., Gregory radioed its tower to report that a door on the plane had fallen off and he was heading back to the Kearny Mesa airport to make an emergency landing, the Federal Aviation Administration reported. Flight controllers then lost contact with him, and the crash was reported moments later.

The door that came off the aircraft was found in a ravine off Santo Road, which is about a half-mile west of the northwestern edge of the golf course.